Can You Trust the Photos?

The Internet has made home shopping more accessible to buyers over the last fifteen years. In the past, home buyers had to rely solely on their Realtor and listing magazines to provide information about possible homes or drive neighborhoods looking for signs and open houses.  Now all buyers have to do is hop online.  With only a couple clicks, today's home buyers can access information and pictures of any house that is for sale.

With all that information freely at their fingertips, buyers also need to be aware that homes are not always as they appear online.  Now more than ever, with tools such as Photoshop, a picture may be worth a thousand words, but it may also be worth a lot less.

Consider these four points before assuming what you see online is what you are going to see in person.

1. Some pictures of homes are old.  Sometimes a seller uses old pictures from when they bought the home before the carpet was worn out, the window was cracked, and the trim started to rot.

2. Wide angle lenses make rooms look larger. Many home buyers are sorely disappointed when they first walk into a home only to realize the dining room isn't large enough for a basketball court.  While wide angle lenses allow the photographer to capture more of the room, the image is also distorted making the rooms appear to be much larger.  In fact some buyers will be so disappointed that the home is smaller than they imagined, they walk away from the perfect home.

3. Bad photography can turn a beauty into a beast.  Pictures with poor lighting, low resolution, or inferior composition can make good homes look like they aren't worth viewing.  While some real estate companies hire professional photographers, some agents will simply use their smart phone and hope for the best.  If all the other specs look good for the house, take the time to actually see it in person.  You may find a diamond in the rough.

4. Agents only show you the good and not the bad.  Don't expect the photographer to take pictures of the aging roof, window rot, or stained carpet.  Unless there is something really wrong with the house and it's already being disclosed, a listing's photos are usually going to focus on the positive.  You need to do your own investigation in person to find out the truth.

It's important to use photos as a launching point, but don't assume they are a true representation of the home you are considering.  If the home is the right size, style, and in your preferred location, location, location; call your agent and go look.  Nothing replaces seeing the real thing with your own two eyes.

 If you are interested in finding out what your home is worth or receiving more information on the current real estate market in Fishers, Carmel, or Indianapolis, feel free to contact The Lugar Real Estate Team at Century 21 Scheetz.  We use the latest research tools and provide the utmost in service to our clients.  Please contact us at 317-572-5033.